The Fated Hour (4)
Once the group’s business is concluded at the Heroe’s Grave, Crono, Ayla, and Magus head west of Choras to the West Cape. At the edge of the cape, the group finds a headstone which reads that this is the final resting place of the “Great Explorer Toma LeVine” who died in 634 A.D. Remembering Toma’s request of Frog, Crono pours the spirits the group got from him on his headstone. A moment later Toma’s ghost appears to the group and offers them a friendly greeting. Toma then tells the group that he has located the Rainbow Shell, it’s on an island to the northwest of the cape called the Giant’s Claw. He warns the group however that there are many monsters and dangers there.
As if that has ever stopped them before.
Given the date on the headstone of Toma’s death, it seems that he (wisley) took his own advice and resisted the urge to peruse the Rainbow Shell too fiercley and seems to have lived a full life instead of dying persuing the chell. So good on him there. Once he has relayed the information, he bids the group farewell and his spirit acends intot the coulds as he toutchingly tells the group that ther is “No drink as fine as one shared in the companly of friends like you” as he dissapears into the great beyond.
In the present day, there doesn’t seem to be any trace of the island that Toma referred to as the Giant’s Claw so the group decides to take the Epoch back to 600 A.D. Once they arrive in the Middle Ages they find the Giant’s Claw and enter a cabe at the base of the mountain that takes up most of the small island. At the entrance of the cave, Crono comes across as crumpled piece of paper they assume was written by Toma refering to jumping in holes in order to progress deeper into the cave. No wonder he decided to abandon his quest for the shell. Crono and the gang decide to press on deeper into the cave and before long come across…Azala’s trhone room? Upne entering the familiar chamber the group quickly comes to the conclusion that beneath the mountain are the buried remains of the Tyranno Lair. It seems that more than just the ruins of the Tyranno Lair have survived to the Medeival Era, the caves and ruins are also occupied by dinosaurs and other creaters, toughened up by millennia of surviving underground.
Crono, Ayla, and Magus continue to fight their way through the caves and left over remnants of the Tyranno Lair until they reach the bottom level of the cave where they come across the Rust Tyranno, apparently a distant descendant of the Black Tyranno that the group faced in 65M B.C. and the final guard of the Rainbow Shell. After the team defreats the Rust Tyranno, they are free to claim the Rainbow Shell for their own. Unfortunately, even with Ayla with them, the shell is far too heavy for the group to lift and carry on their own. Ayla then suggests they could enlist the help of the “castle people” to move the shell and the group heads off to Guardia Castle.
Once the group is at Guardia Castle, the king is more than happy to help the them retreive the Rainbow Shell from the cave at the Giant’s Claw. The king even offers to keep the Rainbow Shell at the castle for safekeeping and keep it as a national treasure and royal heirloom before ordering the knight commander to see to it’s retrieval.
After the arrangements have been made regarding the Rainbow Shell, the group returns to the End of Time to check on the group members hanging out there. When the group talks to Marle, she once again expresses her delight that Crono is back in action but then wonders how her father is doing. Given the retrieval of the Rainbow Shell in 600, now seems like a pretty good time to check in and see if it’s still in safe keeping. Marle, Crono, and Magus then pile in to the Epoch and set course for Guardia Castle circa 1000 A.D. Upon arriving at the castle, the group lears that there are shenanigans occurring at the castle, naturally. The posted guards at the castle tell the group that the king is currently being tried for selling a royal heirloom. The team tries to have a look around to see if they can get any more information on what the heck is going on this time but most of the castle is sealed off while the trial is ongoing. Even the kitchen staff is being constantly shadowed by guards as they do their work. The team then decide to head up the tower leading and head to the courtroom but guards are posed outside denying the them entry. Marle demands to be let inside and the guards eventually relent.
Inside the courtroom is a familiar scene with the chancellor, serving as prosecutor, is accusing the king of selling the Rainbow Shell in defiance of a royal will written by King Guardia in 600 A.D. instructing that the shell be unveiled to the people during the Millennial Fair. The current king, denies even knowing of the Rainbow Shell’s existence but the chancellor turns it around and accuses the king of being greedy. Marle then enters the courtroom and goes to her father who then his daughter her that the chancellor is framing him. The chancellor scoffs at the accusation and says that if the king is in fact guiltless, then the Rainbow Shell should still be in the castle. Just produce it, and the king’s innocence would be beyond question. The chancellor then orders soldiers to remove Marle from the courtroom before moving on with the trial.
Once she is out of the courtroom, Malre and the team set out to recover the Rainbow Shell from the storage rooms in the basement. As the group enters the basement, they come across an injured soldier near the door. The soldier claims that he’s been bitten on the toe by a rat and that is why he’s out of commission. No wonder these things keep happening, the solders here have come a long way since the war against the Mystics. Further in the basement, the group overhears two familiar-looking snakes talking to each other about their “boss” framing up the king and getting revenge for a family grudge. The two snakes are dispatched by the group and Marle, realizing that there really is a plot afoot, leads the group deeper into the basement.
Back in the courtroom the jury is hearing testimony from a merchant claiming that he is the one that the king sold the Rainbow Shell to. The merchant claims that the king had a desperate look about him while he was conducting the sale before the king exclaims that he has never seen this merchant before. As the merchant concludes his testimony, the chancellor commends him for being so convincing, pleased that his plan is going off without a hitch.
In the basement, Marle, Crono, and Magus continue to fight through the same enemies that they faced at the cathedral in 600 A.D. After making their way through the basement, the team find the Rainbow Shell in the deepest part of the basement. Marle approaches the shell and finds a letter near it addressed to her. Magus, thinking that he’s being helpful, offer to burn the note for her but Marle decides to go ahead and read it first. The letter seeks to remind Marle about the importance of her family and encourages her to keep fighting on. The letter is signed by Queen Leene. After reading the note, Marle takes a shard from the Rainbow Shell to use as evidence proving her father is innocent of the crimes that the chancellor is framing him for.
While the group is making a mad dash back to the courtroom with the shard, the jury begins rendering its verdict. When the group makes back to the courtroom, the guards refuse to let Marle in prompting her to try to find another way in while Corno and Magus wait outside. Inside the courtroom, the king has been found guilty by a 4-1 margin. The chancellor orders the king be taken to the dungeon and declares himself the new ruler of Guardia on the spot. Because he apparently thinks he can do that and his claim to the throne won’t be immediately challenged by Marle. Speaking of which, before the king can be taken away, Marle is spotted behind the giant stained-glass window decorating the courtroom and smashes through it, landing in front of the judge’s desk and shows the room the shard from the Rainbow Shell exposing the chancellor’s plot.
The chancellor isn’t ready to give up on his revenge just yet and decides to take the more direct route. He swears that he will avenge his ancestors and transforms into Yakra XIII. Once the monster has revealed himself, Marle rushes her father out of the courtroom while simultaneously letting Crono and Magus in so they can aid her in defeating the holder of the longest grudge in history. Talk about not letting something go…
Although Yakra XIII proves to be much tougher than his ancestor, he nonetheless is defeated allowing their grudge against the Guardia royal family to continues for another four hundred years. Once the coast is clear, the king enters the courtroom once again and apologizes to Marle for being so stubborn. Malre also admits to not taking his feelings into consideration and apologizes also allowing the two to share a nice moment of reconciliation. The king then tells Marle about her mother’s last words which surprises Marle since the chancellor told her that the king was absent at the time, which seems like a pretty unnecessary and mean-spirited lie on top of everything else the imposter did.
Some time later everyone has gathered in the throne room where the king tells the group that they are free to come and go as they please but urges them to use caution and take care of Marle. Just then, Melchior enters the throne room and tells the group that he would like to make some armor from the Rainbow Shell. He then heads off to the basement before anyone can ask him how he knew about the shell or how he got to Guardia so quickly. Gurus are just mysterious like that. Marle, Crono, and Magus return to the courtroom to recover something that Yakra left behind before he vas vanquished and find Yakra’s key. Partway down the tower leading up to the courtroom the team comes across a locked chest which opens with the key and release the real chancellor. Old habits die hard apparently. The chancellor thanks the group for releasing him before rushing off to continue preparations for the “Moonlight Parade.”
When the group catches up with Melchior in the basement, he’s already hard at work studying the Rainbow Shell and working out what he’s going to do with the legendary material. He tells the group that he can either make one Prismatic Dress, which will provide significant protection to one person, or he can make three Prismatic Helms, each provide less protection but can be worn by anyone. The group decides to go with the three helmets and Melchior gets to work. After Melchior finishes and gives the group their Prismatic Helms, he notices that they also have a Sun Stone and claims that he can make something really great using both it and the Rainbow Shell. Not wanting to stop him while he’s on a roll, the group lets Melchior go to work and he produces some Prismatic Spectacles and the Rainbow, Crono’s most powerful sword (until the DS re-release anyway). Once Melchior is done, he allows himself to take some pride in a good day’s work.